Min Ko Naing still denied medical treatment

Jun 25, 2008 (DVB), The health of prominent 88 Generation Student leader Min Ko Naing is suffering in prison due to the authorities' refusal to grant him proper medical access, a fellow prisoner's relative said.

The student leader has been held in the notorious Insein prison since August 2007. He asked prison authorities for an emergency medical treatment two weeks ago because his health had deteriorated, but his request has still not been granted.

A family member of a political prisoner who visited the prison on Monday told DVB that Min Ko Naing's family was worried about him.

"His sister told me that Min Ko Naing was suffering from high blood pressure, an eye infection and gout. His family has sent him medicine but his health has not improved yet," said the mother of Aunt Bwe Kyaw, who is also being held in the prison.

"His family is very worried about Min Ko Naing's health because his request for proper medical treatment is still being denied," she continued.

Min Ko Naing was first arrested in 1989 and spent more than 16 years in prison. He was severely tortured and held in solitary confinement for most of his sentence. He was released in 2004.

In August last year, 13 members of the 88 Generation Students group including Min Ko Naing were arrested for leading protests in Rangoon. The protests triggered the biggest demonstrations in Burma since the 1988 uprising, but were brutally crushed by the military regime.

Min Ko Naing is currently being held under the Printing Act and could face up to 20 years' imprisonment but has still not been sentenced.

Reporting by Khin Hnin Htet

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